Black Sheep Capital founder Dan Gavel talks about building a diversified investment strategy in VC

- January 23, 2024 2 MIN READ
Dan Gavel
Brisbane based investor Daniel Gavel is known for his down-to-earth and innovative approach to investing through angel investing, Black Sheep Capital Fund, and the Flock Syndicate.

The Black Sheep portfolio includes Airtasker, Sendle, Amber Electric and Llama Life.

Gavel recently sat down with Cheryl Mack from Aussie Angels and Maxine Minter to talk about his experiences on their podcast, First Cheque.

First Cheque aims to uncover the inner workings of early-stage investing and share practical knowledge from seasoned, successful investors. 

Mack and Minter chose guests with deep experience managing, investing and earning millions through supporting impactful startups from pre-seed to IPO for these conversations. First Cheque delves into these investor decision-making frameworks.

In the episode, Gavel explains how he decides which investments go to each channel and how they evaluate deals. He shares his perspective of how to understand risk, adapting investment strategies, different types of investing through funds and syndicates, and how being a lead investor is really about relationships.  

“For us, the pre-seed stage is all or nothing. We’re aware that it’s a risky business, and we accept that,” Gavel says.

Discussing what investments are personal vs fund or vs their syndicate, Gavel talks through how he evaluates deals. He shares how Black Sheep considers long-term market trends and makes decisions to deploy capital looking several years into the future while considering existing market trends. 

“It’s not about how much you can understand the risk you’re taking, it’s more about your capacity to accept that risk and what it means to a broader picture,” he said.

The role of lead investor 

Gavel admits to being more of an instinctual investor. After a pitch, he’ll find that he wants to invest in the startup straight away. So he’ll spend weeks trying to talk himself out of it considering all the pros and cons. 

He believes that being a lead investor is about building relationships with founders and providing the best post-investment support and guidance. 

“The lead investor is the person who wants to build a relationship with the founder and do what it takes to get the deal across the line,” Gavel said. 

First Cheque brings you a front row seat to the world of early-stage investing with motivated and ambitious guests dedicated to sharing knowledge.

Listen to the First Cheque episode with Dan Gavel from Black Sheep Capital here. 

Subscribe to the First Cheque podcast to be notified of upcoming episodes. 

Others you can listen to now include Jessy Wu from Afterwork Ventures, Judy Anderson-Firth from Euphemia, and Rayn Ong from Archangel Ventures.

First Cheque is presented by DayOne.FM, the podcast network for Australian founders, investors and operators. Day One are best known for their work producing The History of the Startup Ecosystem podcast and documentary featuring 100+ interviews with key startup leaders. 

NOW READ: First Cheque, a new podcast by early-stage investors Cheryl Mack and Maxine Minter, explores how founders tackle VC funding